Today my guest is Chariot's Joel Confino. He's worked as a consultant with a variety of open source technologies, including Java and Spring, for more than a decade. Joel has been called upon by management types on various clients to advise in matters such as open source project selection, which can be a thorny process. Today we discuss an open source evaluation and selection process that he has developed and has been made available for review in a public journal (see below).
This is a two-part series. In the first part, Joel lays out his selection criteria and why he feels most other selection processes are not comprehensive enough for the unique world of open source software. We then dive into a very informative discussion of open source license models, including the GNU Public License, the Lesser GPL, the Apache license, and variations thereof.
Of course we aren't lawyers, so always consult one before making legal agreements. But I think if you don't know a GPL from a LGPL, it's definitely worth listening to this talk.
Joel's research, also part of his Master's Thesis in Computer Science, is published in IGI Global's International Journal of Strategic Information Technology and Applications, and is available for $30 online by the publisher. Disclosure: Joel is not compensated for purchases of this paper.
In part 2, we discuss the other criteria, including code quality, project velocity, pedigree, community, market penetration, and more. We will spend a significant amount of time discussing both static and dynamic analysis of code. Look for that to be released in a few days.